ELKHART — Proposition 1, the selling of beer and wine in the city of Elkhart, will be on the ballot for the May 9 election.
The proposition was approved to be placed on the ballot during the city council meeting on Dec. 1, 2014.
Charles Hobbs, an Elkhart citizen since 1989, and a candidate for the city council, began the petition that led to Proposition 1.
He explained in an interview in November, 2014 that the selling of beer and wine would help create revenue for the city and lessen the risks of drunk drivers.
According to Hobbs, the proposition had a lot of support, receiving almost 100 signatures on the petition. Though Hobbs may have had support during the acquisition of signatures, citizens voiced concerns during the council meeting in December.
At the time, council members discussed the pro's and con's to adding it to the ballot, but ultimately approved a ballot measure for the legal sale of beer and wine in the city.
“I have a lot of mixed emotions about it, but at the end of the day I feel like the citizens should be able to vote on it or not,” Mayor pro-tem Randy McCoy said during the meeting.
After the approval, several of the town's church leaders met to discuss and pray over the proposition at the request of Pastor Wayne Frasier from Montalba Baptist Church.
Though his church is out of the city, Frasier said he lived within city limits and would be affected be the vote.
“We've just basically tried to spread the word and let people know that the proposition is on the ballot,” Frasier said. “There is usually not a big turn out for city elections and this will give the people a chance to voice their opinion.”
Frazier said that he fears that the benefits for Proposition 1 will not outweigh the cost.
Due to legal suggestions, the Elkhart city council and employees of the city were unable to comment on Proposition 1.
Citizens will have the chance to vote on the selling of beer and wine in the city during the May 9 elections in addition to the city primary election. Also on the ballot, Lucia Butler will oppose Erroll Tatum for Mayor.
The rest of the ballot for city council is filled with uncontested races. In Place 1, Mike Gordon will be the new councilman. Bill Yonts will sit in Place 2 and Hobbs will be the new councilman in Place 3.